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May 28, 2:00 PM ET
Chat with David Newton

David Newton
  (2:00 PM)

What's on your mind NASCAR world? Did you agree with the decision to let drivers work on the cars during the cable incident in the 600? Are you impressed with the way Harvick and Childress are winning races despite the lame duck status? Are you worried about Junior? Fire away.

bob (pa)

I hope you are as proud as we (Danica Nation) are about her solid top 25 run Sunday night. She had the car to beat (the start and parkers) all night until that loser Keselowski took her out. Hopefully her remaining within 2 laps of the leader like she did the other night is a sign of the great things to come. She needs to just keep logging laps, one day a top 20 finish will come her way

David Newton
  (2:02 PM)

First of all, her boyfriend Ricky Stenhouse Jr. played a role in the wreck. He went low to force three wide with Danica and Keselowski. Danica moved up as Keselowski moved down. Boom. So the big question is how will that impact her relationship?

Scott (MD)

Hey Dave, why don't teams ever put in a new motor and go back on the track after having blown up an engine? They will spend countless laps putting sheet metal, transmissions, rear end gears, etc., but when it comes to the motor exploding, they just pack it up. Why? (if you say $$$, couldn't they just throw in a second-hand motor or something akin to scuffs (tires)).?

David Newton
  (2:03 PM)

They aren't allowed to replace the entire motor, and if they could it would take so long to do it that the effort wouldn't be worth the positions picked up.

Murphy (Mason Dixon Line)

Ol Kurtis is looking Mighty Sporty this year. He has some good tracks coming up for him too. I think He might be able to race his way into the top 10 and make the chase...what do you think sir?

David Newton
  (2:06 PM)

Top 10 might be tough even though he's only like 31 points out. You have to be consistent over the long haul and as we saw with the battery problem on Sunday that Kurt was able to overcome the team hasn't proven it can avoid the little things that will cost it from time to time. But you have to be impressed with what Kurt and Furniture Row have accomplished. He's showing just how talented he is.

Dave (WI)

I think the question is backwards, what can NASCAR do to get these cars to race more like the Indycars? Having about 8 cars that can pass for the lead was great to watch. I'm assuming the NASCAR engineers are working 24/7 toward this goal?

David Newton
  (2:07 PM)

That is the ultimate goal. Brian France reiterated that on Saturday. Getting that to happen is another thing. It's not just the cars. The tires play a big role in this.

Lee (Tampa)

morning Newt, how big a story is it that a lame duck driver has 2 wins and is he a genuine contender for the championship?

David Newton
  (2:08 PM)

If it was a driver of a lesser talent than Harvick it would be huge. But Harvick has been pretty adamant from the start his focus on this year is RCR. Kenseth was the same way last year, and he had a pretty good run.

Jim (Georgia)

After Rowdy's early qual run he said there were still 2-3 10th's left in the track and that was exactly how the front row played out. How did Rowdy make that amazing prediction?

David Newton
  (2:09 PM)

He's pretty smart when it comes to racing.

Turk (Mich.)

After Kurt's unbelievable qualifying #2 tweeted, "Kurt Busch= most talented driver in NASCAR. Happy to see him run well. Does that show Kurt's standing in the garage amoung his cup champions peers?

David Newton
  (2:10 PM)

I missed that, but if Keselowski did tweet it then I think the question already has been answered.

Jake (Irving, TX)

Hi Newt. Why doesn't Rowdy hang around to boost his guys moral like Jr did after they both blew engines?

David Newton
  (2:11 PM)

Not sure a driver hanging around would do anything at that point.

Vernie (NJ)

Newt, we are starting to think Rowdy drives his car too hard and worries too much about leading laps. His Team leader Matt Kenseth needs to teach him to save a car for the end. You agree?

David Newton
  (2:12 PM)

I agree that Matt Kenseth is one of the best in the garage at saving his car. Denny Hamlin, too. Busch is learning, but it's hard when you have that kind of talent not to want to lead every lap. Unfortunately, in this sport you don't get points for leading at the halfway point.

Vernie (NJ)

You colleague MartySmthESPN tweeted the fans were cheering Kurt's awesome outside pole run for @FR78racing and I wondered if you notice that the fans have come around and are now supportint Kurt Busch?

David Newton
  (2:13 PM)

I think they are recognizing his talent and are cheering for the little team to compete with the big boys.

Andrew (W. Kentucky)

What did you think of Kasey Kahne's comment after the NNS races when he said , "there is no shame in finishing 2nd to Kyle Busch in any series"?

David Newton
  (2:13 PM)

Well, there isn't a shame.

Baseballman (Florida)

Do you think driver of #2 being at Indy as a tourist instead of helping his team during the suspension of crew chief and others shows a lack of committment? Is that why #2 is winless and dumping in the points?

David Newton
  (2:14 PM)

No. He brought notoriety to NASCAR and Penske Racing by being there. If he were in Charlotte he would have been in his motorcoach chilling out and watching the 500 as every other driver was. Some weren't even at the track, enjoying the Indy race from home.

Tyler (SD)

David, how is Rowdy holding up after this devastating "cable-gate" tragedy robbed the #18 team of a win or sure top 5 and those valuable points?

David Newton
  (2:14 PM)

Cable had nothing to do with what happened to the engine.

txtechjmacattack (lubbock)

Do you think the inter-team rivalry between RCR drivers Kurt Busch and Kevin Harvick is helping to propel #78 and #29 to strong seasons?

David Newton
  (2:15 PM)

Not the rivalry, if there is one. But Harvick did note that having Kurt to use as another source of information has helped RCR.

Laura (Manhattan Beach)

Hi David, could NASCAR penallize Fox for the damage to the race leading #18 car and fine the network $1M and award #18 team 36-40 bonus points to make up for actions detrimental to the sport?

David Newton
  (2:15 PM)

No.

Neal (Denver, CO)

When's NASCAR gonna stop blowing sunshine up our skirts about the Gen6 car? We're 1/3 of the way through the season and "just wait it'll get better" is getting extremely tiresome. The leader still has a significant aero advantage and the last 11 laps of the 600 were damn near identical to the last 10 laps of the All Star Race with the leader pulling away and winning completely uncontested. Compared to IndyCar's DW12, the Gen6 is a total joke.

David Newton
  (2:17 PM)

And this is different than when Richard Petty and David Pearson were winning races by a lap over the entire field at times? People have this romantic memory of how great racing was, but in truth the overall product has never been better.

Chuck (Cleveland, Ohio)

Good afternoon Newt, hope you were able to enjoy your Memorial Day! What is happening with the Champ, Brad Keselowski? Ever since Texas that Penske team has struggled mightily, dropping from second to 10 and not looking very competitive.

David Newton
  (2:19 PM)

Won't say I enjoyed the day totally. A drunken driver in a pickup truck hit a pole near our house and we had no power for almost nine hours. As for Keselowski, you're right Keselowski has struggled. Much of the time he's struggled to overcome mistakes that kept him from getting the most out of a fast car. He's just going through a bad spell. Wouldn't surprise me to see him turn it around over the next few weeks with crew chief Paul Wolfe coming back.

Kaitlynn (Fort Wayne)

I am a huge fan of Denny Hamlin. i know that after his fourth place finnish last week at charlotte put him 24th in points but with so few races left until the chase starts what would u say his chances of making the chase be? cause if he doesnt make it i believe it would be his first time not making the chase

David Newton
  (2:21 PM)

It would be his first time missing it, but I still believe he'll make it. If he keeps rattling off top fives and wins two races he'll be safely inside the top 20 by Richmond. What would hurt is Kyle Busch falling outside the top 10 so those two wins would count toward a wild card, and for another driver in the top 20 to get a win or two. Marcos Ambrose could win both road course races.

Jeremy (Georgia)

I have pretty much given up on NW series when Ky. Busch races. It's boring and predictable Whenever he drives for JGR, he's dominant. Last year when he drove for himself, it was fun, because anyone could win. Now, I and many others find more interesting things to do on Saturdays.

David Newton
  (2:22 PM)

Look at it as everybody in the NBA trying to knock off the Miami Heat. When it happens, you'll get great enjoyment from it.

Jeremy (Georgia)

How close is RCR to being elite again? Harvick has 2 wins, Menard is usually in or near the top 10 and doesn't seem to be dropping down the standings like everyone predicted.

David Newton
  (2:25 PM)

Richard Childress believes they're close. I believe they're still the fourth or fifth best organization in the garage behind JGR, Hendrick, Roush and MWR, but the gap isn't nearly as big as it was a year ago. A year ago they were behind SHR as well.

Ron (OH)

Twice the sky camera has fallen from the cables at sporting venues. It is far too dangerous to be over so many fans and the race cars for what little it provides.

David Newton
  (2:26 PM)

I like the angles, but if they can't find a way to make it totally secure then it's not worth the risk in motorsports.

John (MA)

Why do the drivers who are not even top 10 in the standings at 11th & 18th (Busch brothers) get the most TV air time and mentions?

David Newton
  (2:26 PM)

Because they are talented and contend for wins.

Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)

As a Danica fan we didn't appreciate hearing Zippy blaming SHR's sorry '13 performance on Danica. If SHR couldn't handle a 3rd team then why did Stewart sign Danica?

David Newton
  (2:27 PM)

The way I heard him he blamed it on the cars and HMS to a degree.

Fred (VA)

Why did it take so long for NASCAR to get the caution flag out when there was a rope on the track? Very dangerous late call.

David Newton
  (2:28 PM)

Because officials weren't aware. Even drivers had a hard time figuring out what it was for a lap. Seems fans who were up close and personal with it had a better angle and realized the danger first. You're right, though, it was dangerous.

Joanne (Ft. Myers)

It was kinda creepy that Dale blew the motor on the #88 on the same lap that Rowdy's engine let go. Why does it seem like the 2013 seasons of #18 and #88 are running parallel?

David Newton
  (2:29 PM)

It was strange. I almost missed the 88 engine focusing on Busch. Don't agree on the parallel, though.

Fred (VA)

Having the Indy 500 & the 600 the same day is hurting TV ratings for both races. Too many hours of racing in one day to watch for most fans.

David Newton
  (2:31 PM)

It's kind of become tradition, and a day I look forward to it, so I have to beg to differ. Do you watch five or six college basketball games a day during the NCAA Tournament as I do? Not much difference.

Dan (GA)

While NASCAR worked to make the cars faster, which makes it harder for cars behind the leader to pass him and makes for boring racing, Indycar went the opposite way and made it harder for the lead car to go faster, which means lots of passes for the lead and a great race to watch. NASCAR screwed up big time.

David Newton
  (2:32 PM)

It wasn't the goal to make the cars faster. It was the goal to help create more passing. Still a work in progress, but I wouldn't call it a total screwup.

Mark (NC)

Why did the TV network take so long to admit it rope on the track was theirs?

David Newton
  (2:32 PM)

I didn't notice a long delay. Everyone was scrambling to figure out what happened because no one had dealt with that situation before.

Mark (NC)

I dread what will happen when the network tries to get back their 36% increase in fees paid to NASCAR. It's going to be constant commercials and sponsor logos on the screen.

David Newton
  (2:34 PM)

I'm a big fan of the side by side deal ABC had for the Indy 500.

Mike (GA)

It was nice to watch a race, the Indy 500, with little blocking, hardly any mentions of sponsors by the drivers, and side by side commercials and racing the whole race with a screen large enough to see the race action during the commercials. NASCAR needs to watch and learn.

David Newton
  (2:34 PM)

Last I looked NASCAR was the stronger of the two series, but I hear you. There were a lot of aspects of the 500 to love.

Jake (Irving, TX)

Why don't all the other cup drivers-Harvick, Kenseth, Kahne, Joey, Denny, Kezolowski-running Nationwide do something to stop Rowdy from winning all the NNS races?

David Newton
  (2:35 PM)

It's not like they're not trying. My idea is to have ESPN offer Busch enough to be int the booth that he can't run.

RacingDMP (Charlotte NC Unwilling to give up date)

David when the in-car camera caught fire and Robby Gordon was leading, did NASCAR stop the race, give him 15mins to repair and allow him his spot back at the front of the pack? Why the favoritism?

David Newton
  (2:37 PM)

This impacted more than one car. NASCAR was worried it might have impacted a dozen or more. The governing body made the right call. But Kenseth noted the same thing when he referred to the piece of concrete that came up and went through Jeff Gordon's grill at Martinsville in 2004.

RacingDMP (Charlotte NC Unwilling to give up date)

How is it that a driver who's primary sponsors target audience is kids (MARS) gets booed at the start finish line and abruptly gives the middle finger to 20k fans on Saturday, (Kyle all but admitted as much in the post race media interview) and everyone in the media acts as if it did not happen? Is JD buying rounds for everyone at the Men's Club or something?

David Newton
  (2:39 PM)

I saw him give the No. 1 sign, not the middle finger.

Jeremy (New Roads, LA)

How many wins do you think Carl Edwards will have by the end of the year, and Where do you think He will finish in points? I'm thinking 2 or 3 and top 5-7

David Newton
  (2:39 PM)

Two and he has a top 5 car.

matt (watkins glen)

why is Tony Stewart so vocal about blocking when he does the same kind things out on the track as everyone else. I would suggest he should watch tape of his own driving before he cast stones at other drivers .

David Newton
  (2:41 PM)

That points was brought out after the California race when he went after Logano. I would argue almost every driver in the garage blocks at some point. And with the cars so equal, you almost have to do it to fend off people.

Boston For 15 (Boston)

A 4 1/2 hour race with 3 red flags, fans hurt, Junior's a hot mess and Patwreck continues to prove she's in waaaay over her head. How concerned is NASCAR over their product currently?

David Newton
  (2:42 PM)

Brian France said he was pleased on Saturday. Not sure the red flags and fans being hurt has anything to do with that.

Brian (Rochester NY)

I have been a NASCAR fan for over 15 years. I must say I agree with Ed Hinton. I do not like GWC. They create artificial excitement. I wish NASCAR would go back to the rules of 10 years ago. No GWC(let alone 3) no double file restarts. I think the double file restarts takes away a drivers ability to control there own destiny(kind of like restrictor plate racing). At many racetracks it is better to be 4th after pit stops than 3rd. At Martinsville it is better to be 3rd than 2nd. If you are back beyond the firt few rows your destiny is controlled by the cars infront of you getting a good restart. This makes no sense and is turning me off from wanting to watch this weekly.

David Newton
  (2:43 PM)

I like the GWC in NASCAR. Createst drama, even if it is artificial at times. It would create mayhem in IndyCar, and I'm a traditionalist so I don't want to see it in the Indy 500.

David Newton
  (2:43 PM)

Plus, don't you like seeing races end under green? I do.

Mark (NC)

How would it be more mayhem for a GWC at Indy than a green flag at lap 197? Which is what happened. Your reasoning for no GWC at Indy doesn't make sense.

David Newton
  (2:44 PM)

Because in NASCAR you can beat and bang each other at high speeds and nobody gets hurt. Do that on a GWC finish, which is likely to happen with everyone bunched up, and it could create chaos.

Kristin (NYC)

Do you think this is the beginning of Junior's slump?

David Newton
  (2:45 PM)

Or maybe he's getting it out of the way early. Good tracks for him coming at Pocono and Michigan.

Ryan D. (Winston-Salem, NC)

Is Harvick the luckiest guy in Sprint Cup this season? Both of his wins came after a very late caution wiped out certain leads for Montoya (Richmond) and Kahne (Charlotte).

David Newton
  (2:46 PM)

Luck always has played a role in this sport. David Ragan was lucky Air Titan was at Talladega, because without it the race never would have restarted and Edwards would have won. With a little luck Matt Kenseth could have five or six wins already. It's part of the intrigue.

Jimmy (Alabama)

For a long time, Dale Jr. was his own worst enemy. He didn't have any confidence at all, but Steve Letarte has changed all that. Dale has his confidence back. It was obvious from Dale's post race interviews when he didn't seem shaken at all and was ready to move on to Dover. I do question Steve Letarte's technical knowledge, though. Jeff Gordon had only one win from 2008-2010. Honestly, he ran alot like Junior does now. Really consistent, but couldn't break through to win races. Do you think Steve Letarte is holding back Dale Jr. at this point?

David Newton
  (2:47 PM)

I do not. Don't forget, he helped Junior get in position to lead the points last season.

Hal (SC)

Great to see that 4 wide indy lights finish last week. No blocking. That's how it should be.

David Newton
  (2:47 PM)

I missed the race, but hear it was great.

Mark (Iowa)

I definately agree with the decision to allow working on the cars. Now, in 2008 when Kyle joined JGR he went out and set the world on fire qualifying, race wins, laps, the whole bit and when the chase came around, couldn't get out of his own way, part failures, etc, could Matt Kenseth have the same luck? History says yes, what do you think?

David Newton
  (2:48 PM)

What happened to Busch in 2008 was beyond his control. You can't predict that.

Ron (OH)

How long did Brain France's nose grow after lying about how many drivers wanted to see Hamlin fined?

David Newton
  (2:49 PM)

I am told what he said did occur with several veteran drivers. You have to remember, many people will say publicly what is popular with the public, then say something different behind closed doors.

Mike (NY)

TURN ON AUTO UPDATE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! AT 2:10 it is still not on.

David Newton
  (2:50 PM)

I did before this started. Not sure why it isn't.

Keith H (Seattle)

Let's say you're not covering a race Sunday and could watch Monaco, Indy and Charlotte. Which one is "destination viewing" and how would you rank them? I'd go Indy, Monaco, Charlotte and switch Monaco and Charlotte for excitement on Sunday.

David Newton
  (2:51 PM)

I'd go Indy, Charlotte, Monaco on most occasions. I only put Indy one because of the tradition of that race. I'm a much bigger fan of stock cars than IndyCars.

Troy (PA)

the #2 never tweeted that about Kurt. Turk is just trolling.

David Newton
  (2:52 PM)

Never know with Brad, but felt I would have heard something if it happened. But if you polled most drivers they'd probably rank Kurt in the top five.

matt (corningny)

why doesn't nascar fine Tony Stewart for making making comments about other drivers similar to the way they do for comments against nascar

David Newton
  (2:52 PM)

Because NASCAR is trying not to over police again.

Turk (Mich.)

Driver of #2 tweeted about Kurt on Thurs. May 24 if you want to check to log.

David Newton
  (2:53 PM)

I will.

Dane (NJ)

Doesn't NASCAR realize that no one will run hard early on in the top 10 because there is no threat of getting too far behind? With the waive around, lucky dog and debris cautions you just need to stay close until the last 100 miles. For those who haven't figured out the formula for debris cautions yet - green flag pit stops cycle all the way through, wait about 10 laps - CAUTION DEBRIS

David Newton
  (2:54 PM)

Again, is this any different than when Pearson used to sandbag and come on strong to win?

Teri (California)

Hi David. Does Kenseth get his 4th win this weekend?

David Newton
  (2:54 PM)

The 20 is performing better than any car in the garage at the moment, but hard to pick against the 48 at Dover.

Greg (North Carolina)

What do you think will come out of cameragate? Impacts to other sports?

David Newton
  (2:55 PM)

They'll figure out what happened and improve the system as typically happens after any freak event.

Matt (watkins glen )

You must be a tony Stewart fan cause you wont answer questions about his whining about blocking

David Newton
  (2:55 PM)

Funny. I'm one of those that called him out for it at California.

Jeremy L. (South Hill, VA)

(Different Jeremy) I agree with you 100000% on racing quality. Online fans do not know what they are talking about. Plus many tracks have new or semi-new pavement, lessening grip and increasing speeds. Kentucky, Atlanta, Chicago will have great racing. I do wonder, and want to ask you, if you think NASCAR will take a serious look at limiting the horespower for these Cup cars at all?

David Newton
  (2:56 PM)

There are those that argue slowing the cars down will fix everything. I'm not an engineer, but I'd like to see NASCAR give it a try for a few weeks just to see.

Andrew (W. Kentucky)

No matter how he tries to spin it, isn't Harvick quitting RCR to join SHR shaping up to be the dumbest move since SHR fired Grubb or HMS fired Rowdy?

David Newton
  (2:57 PM)

Not even close. When he made the decision SHR was maybe the second to third best team in the garage. RCR wasn't in the top five.

matt (corningny)

I think the allstar race should be held at a track that they don't run durning the season whats your oppinon on making the allstar race better

David Newton
  (2:58 PM)

That would be tough. I'm not a big fan of moving it out of Charlotte. This seems like it should be the place for the event. But I'd be willing to say let's move it to Bristol for a year and see what happens. It is close enough that it wouldn't be a huge expense for teams.

Teri (CA)

Better driver... Kasey Kahne or Dale Jr.?

David Newton
  (2:58 PM)

Kahne.

Vinnie (ATL)

Keith, I have been to all three (Indy, Monaco, and Charlotte). Nothing beats Monaco. The trip was a once in a lifetime experience. Indy is cool for the history. Charlotte is just OK.

David Newton
  (2:59 PM)

Well, if you throw in the city then Monaco wins hands down. I've been there as well. The French Riviera would win over any destination in any series.

Saul (San Diego)

Based on how Hamlin is running and other top 10 cars in the point standing not having good finishes, do you think he has a shot of making the chase?

David Newton
  (3:00 PM)

I do. But what could hurt him are strong teams such as Busch falling out of the top 10. If Busch is 11th with two wins that leaves only one spot. If Harvick were to fall out, which he could, that would take a spot. I doubt Hamlin can get much higher than 18th, so he'll need the top driver to be in the top 10.

Saul (San Diego)

Will Jr make the chase?

David Newton
  (3:01 PM)

YES.

Dan (J.C. Kansas)

why not Bill Elliott??? HOF

David Newton
  (3:01 PM)

He has to be out of a Cup car for three years.

Jeremy L. (South Hill, VA)

Also I do not understand the (slight) negative feedback over the Coke 600; of course it's long, it's 600 miles! Dale Jarrett won it in 1996 (the "golden days" as Twitterville and YouTube commenters note) by 12 seconds. Racing is superb today.

David Newton
  (3:01 PM)

Thank you.

Mark (NC)

Running races 2 weeks in a row at CMS hurts attendance. That is why they should move Allstar race.

David Newton
  (3:01 PM)

You might be right.

Alan (Columbus, OH)

Hi David! Is there any news on what specifically went wrong with Kyle's engine? I'm just curious if these are TRD carry-over issues that they have been working on all along, or a Dave Rogers/JGR tuning issue.

David Newton
  (3:02 PM)

None so far.

David Newton
  (3:02 PM)

That's it for me today. Check out the coverage from Dover this weekend and as usual ask anything anytime on Twitter at @Dnewtonespn. Have a great week.